China saw exports unexpectedly rise in June and its trade surplus with the United States hit a record high.
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The results look set to keep a bitter trade dispute with Washington going for a while.
Official data did show that growth in imports for June showed a moderate slowdown from May.
The data was reported after President Trump raised the stakes in its trade dispute with China on Tuesday, saying it would slap 10 percent tariffs on an extra $200 billion worth of Chinese imports, including numerous consumer items.
Firing the first shots in a trade war that has rattled financial markets and raised risks to the global economy.
Washington last week imposed 25 percent tariffs on $34 billion of Chinese imports.
China then retaliated with tariffs of the same amount on U.S. goods.
China's June exports rose 11.3 percent from a year earlier, beating forecasts for a 10 percent increase according to the latest Reuters poll of 39 analysts, and down from a 12.6 percent gain in May.
Imports grew 14.1 percent in June, customs said, missing analysts' forecast of a 20.8 percent growth, and compared with a 26 percent rise in May.
The Chinese ministry encouraged companies to increase import of soybean, soymeal, vehicles, aquatic products from other markets.
China's exports to the United States rose 13.6 percent in the first half of 2018 from a year earlier, while its imports from the U.S. rose 11.8 percent in the same period.
China continues to win the trade balance between the two countries.
In June the surplus with the U.S. was at $28.97 billion, up from $24.58 billion in May, according to Reuters calculations based on customs data released on Friday.
The surplus was the highest ever with the U.S. for any single month, according to Reuters calculations based on official data going back to 2008.